RICHLAND, WA - InnovaTek has received a Phase 2 contract under the U.S. Navy's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program for further development of its BioGuardian® Air Sampler technology. InnovaTek's novel technology collects and concentrates biologically relevant particles from the air and removes large interfering particles such as dust, so that effective and accurate identification of potential toxic organisms is possible. Feasibility of the technology was demonstrated last year during Phase 1 of the Program, and set the stage for the $600,000 Phase 2 award. Under the new contract InnovaTek will further develop the technology to a commercial stage so that it can be used to warn against and treat exposure to harmful aerosolized particles such as biological warfare agents.
"During Operation DESERT STORM, a major deficiency identified was the inability of U.S. Forces to effectively collect, detect, and identify Biological Warfare agent," said Mr. John Lewis, Project Engineer for the Naval Surface Warfare Center." The development of a cyclone separator for bioaerosol sampling by InnovaTek will directly benefit existing and future biowarfare collection/detection technologies." In addition to its military application, the BioGuardian is expected to have a wide variety of global scale markets, including civil defense, public health, food production, and pharmaceutical/medical applications. "We are also evaluating the technology for use in orchards and vineyards to help assess the presence of pests and spores. This will help pinpoint the need and timing for pesticide application, thereby reducing the cost and environmental impacts of crop management practices", said Dr. Patricia Irving, President and CEO of InnovaTek.
The BioGuardian Air Sampler represents the first commercial product developed by InnovaTek, an advanced technology research and development company located in Richland. The company is also developing a hand held surface decontamination system and a fuel processor that produces hydrogen for electrical generation by a fuel cell.